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18 Nov 2008 05:11:01

Scientists call for airport moratorium

Scientists call for airport moratorium
It would be "negligent and irresponsible" to ignore the growing carbon emissions from the aviation industry, according to experts.

Kevin Anderson and Alice Bows, climate scientists at the University of Manchester's Tyndall Centre, have concluded that technology could help reduce the industry's emissions in the medium to long term but only an "immediate programme of demand management" will contain its growing emissions.

Speaking to the Guardian, Professor Anderson said: "There should be a complete moratorium on airport expansion prior to including aviation in the emissions trading scheme."

Aviation accounts for seven per cent of the UK's emissions and is growing at a rate of seven per cent a year.

The UK recently committed to reducing carbon emissions by 80 per cent by 2050 – the most ambitious target in the world.

Under pressure from campaign groups, it also agreed to include the shipping and aviation industries in its targets. They had previously been excluded despite their heavy emissions on the grounds that it was difficult to allocate their emissions.

Boris Johnson has objected to plans to build a new runway at Heathrow but has also put the wheels in motion for a new airport in the Thames Estuary.



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